The Best $6 I Spent in 2017

One of the best purchases I’ve made in 2017 has been my copy of Merriam-Webster’s Vocabulary Builder (only about $6 on Amazon). It sits on my dining room table and I pick it up most days while I sip my morning coffee. My wife enjoys making fun of me for it. “Are you reading from the dictionary again?” Well, not entirely. I’m not that much of a nerd. Continue reading “The Best $6 I Spent in 2017”


Ernest Hemingway

Last Christmas a very close friend gave me copy of Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea. He told me he thought that I would really enjoy it. At that point, one semester into law school, I hadn’t read anything for my own enjoyment in months. I hadn’t read fiction for my own enjoyment in years. Unfamiliar with Hemingway’s writing and not knowing what to expect, I cautiously paged through the first few chapters. What I found truly surprised me. Continue reading “Ernest Hemingway”

It’s Been a Crazy Month…

In the month of May, I’ve…

  • Directed the Davies Pep Band at the USCA Midwest High School Regional Croquet Tournament
  • Played the national anthem on guitar at the same event (Jimi style!)
  • Played at the Cass County Youth Commission “Rock For Wishes” Battle of the Bands fundraiser for Make a Wish
  • Performed with my jazz combo at a Mother’s Day brunch
  • Played with my new band, Mix Theory at the Fargo Marathon
  • Played my last high school jazz concert ever (with guest artist Allen Carter!)
  • Received the Louis Armstrong Award for jazz

In the midst of all of this, I haven’t written a single blog post here in the month of May until now. I have two more days of high school left. Next Sunday, I graduate. Three months from yesterday I move in at the residence halls at MSUM. Now that the craziness of this month has died down temporarily, I look back and I’m humbled by the amazing talented people I’ve had the privilege to play with over the past couple years in jazz band. I’m incredibly honored to receive the Louis Armstrong award, but also humbled by the talent of those around me who remind me I still have so much to learn. I’m sad it’s all basically over, but looking forward to an exciting new chapter and the incredible new things I’ll learn as I’ll be studying music education in the fall at MSUM.

Thank you so much to Stephen Anderson, Jenny Sun, Dan Schuster, Garrett Hoy, Karan Saravana, Kathleen Marsh, Payson Wallach, Mr. Leeman, Allen Carter, Nick Fryer, Mr. Syverson, Mr. Tafelmeyer, and the countless others who have inspired me over the past couple years and have taught me so much about jazz music.